Wow. There’s a reason five stars are on the cover. It deserves every. Single. One.
I’m not even sure where to begin with all the thoughts roiling around in my head. It was a long read and took me several days but somehow I’m still digesting.
The narrative was fantastic. A female perspective coming from a male writer is a rarity, but Estes did such a great job I didn’t even realize it until after I finished. Yes, I don’t pay attention to the author’s name until afterwards. Yes, I can usually tell if it’s a male or female from the first chapter.
Anyway, the writing was just amazing. It reminded me a lot of the Chaos Walking series. Easy to read and understand, but also incredibly realistic and believable. Everything from the accents to the deep thoughts, the characters were alive for me.
Speaking of believable, oh man the world building! Sometimes I could swear I felt hot just from the words on the pages. Fire country indeed.
At the start, I kept wanting to put it down. Not because I didn’t like it. Not because it wasn’t good. But because I didn’t want to know what would happen. I didn’t want the characters to suffer. I already loved them and I didn’t want to see them hurt.
Boy it was a wild ride. The twists and ‘spiracies made it seem hopeless and hopeful at the same time. A rollercoaster of emotions up until the very last page.
I’m sad it’s over.
I’m even sadder that the next book in the series, Ice Country, does not look appealing at all. It’s not a continuation but a standalone story. I read the first chapter and I’m not interested in the least. It’s bittersweet, knowing that the end of an amazing book you just read is final. But it was a good end, so I guess I’m just going to thank David for an amazing book and move on.
Overall, this is one of the best dystopian fantasies I’ve read to date. If you’re looking for a heart wrenching story with amazing characters, this will satisfy you to no end. If you want something light and fun, I would save it for later. Definitely a worthwhile read.